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review 2017-04-19 17:04
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli

This has been a book I've been meaning to read since its publication date. So many people have talked about how it's such an amazing book about LGBTQIAP+ characters and their struggles being in a high school environment. And I've wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Well, I finally read it and I have to say that it is a very good book indeed!


The writing is so refreshing. Albertalli writes in a way that most teens write/talk. I enjoyed her writing style quite a bit. It's a fun style. It's easy to read through. In fact, I read this book in one sitting. I don't think it's anything mind-blowing, but that's not what Albertalli was aiming for. She was trying to capture the essence of what it is to be a teenager and I think she succeeded fairly well. My one complaint about her writing was whenever she talked about Tumblr. If you have a Tumblr, you know that it's main focus/use is for people to connect with their fandoms. However, within the story, Albertalli uses it more as a tool for gossip... which is an aspect that is used on FaceBook, not Tumblr. Also, Tumblr users don't tend to say "I saw it on the Tumblr." We just say Tumblr. It came off as someone who has heard of Tumblr but never really used it. You know "trying to be hip with the kids" and all that. It was not necessary and felt completely forced.


The story itself is quite entertaining. Simon, main character, is closeted and talks to this other boy, nicknamed Blue, about what he's feeling and going through as a gay teen. However, another boy, Martin, finds out about Simon being gay and uses it to blackmail Simon into helping him woo Simon's friend, Abby, and the story goes on from there. It's filled with drama, rivalries, angst, and the like. It's a great contemporary novel about high school life and struggling with sexuality. I also love this novel for not being completely bleak either. That's not to say Simon doesn't deal with some turmoil; there's a bit of that, too. But I like that it's not all tragic. I am sick and tired of reading LGBTQIAP+ fiction and it always ending in tragedies. Queer people are not tragedies waiting to have for heterosexuals entertainment. And I feel that this book understood that and actually gave hope and happiness for the characters, which is something I appreciate tremendously.


Now let's talk about the characters! Simon is our lead and he's trying to figure out who he is whilst trying not to change in a constantly changing world. I like him. He's fun and energetic if a bit stupid. No, seriously... he's dumb. Throughout the entire novel, he was trying to figure out the true identity of Blue and it took him until the end of the book to figure it out. The reader is able to figure it out before the half-way mark of the novel so it was just his own stupidity, really, that he couldn't figure it out. Also, there's a thing that happens in the end that involves a T-shirt that I couldn't help but roll my eyes at. I mean, really, Simon? You didn't check the bloody shirt for two weeks? If you read the book, you know what I mean. Anyway, he's a good kid. He's just a little dumb.


Martin is a douche. He does so many unspeakable things for no other reason than jealousy. He's a very shallow character who is self-entitled and annoys the crap out of me. Abby is cool. She's a character that was very sweet and loving and I adore how she doesn't judge anyone. She is my favorite character by far. Leah is Simon's other friend and I love that she likes anime/manga. The one thing about her character that I don't like was how she was always treating Abby so coldly because, you guessed it, of jealously. Why is it that female characters can't be friends with each other? And yeah, there are other female characters in the book that are awesome, too, but the main ones are Abby and Leah, and Leah spends the entire book hating on Abby. This trend where females are always at each other's throats because of some GUY really needs to end. Women are more than bratty, bitchy characters fighting over men. Please write better female characters! DX


Overall, I did enjoy this book. I had problems with how Simon acted and how the women were sometimes portrayed, but other than that, it was a fun book. I love how Albertalli called out how wrong it is for people to consider being white and straight as the default to all. She did have interracial couples within the book and she had more than two gay characters. So it's a pretty solid read despite what I stated previously. I do see potential for this author to grow and be even more inclusive. So if you're looking for a fun light read about teenagers in high school, then give this a shot. I think you might like it.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-01-09 15:03
Nur Drei Worte // Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda !!!
Nur drei Worte - Becky Albertalli,Ingo Herzke

First things first: I received this book through NetGalley.

German and english review


Das war eindeutig eins der Bücher, von denen man so viel letztes Jahr gehört hat, egal welchem Booktuber oder Buchblogger man folgt. Es war überall. Ich hatte es dann bei NetGalley gefunden aber bin ewig nicht dazu gekommen es zu lesen. Aber jetzt hat es endlich geklappt und ich bin wirklich so happy.


Kleine Inhaltsangabe:

Was Simon über Blue weiß: Er ist witzig, sehr weise, aber auch ein bisschen schüchtern. Und ganz schön verwirrend. Was Simon nicht über Blue weiß: WER er ist. Die beiden gehen auf dieselbe Schule und schon seit Monaten tauschen sie E-Mails aus, in denen sie sich die intimsten Dinge gestehen. Simon spürt, dass er sich langsam, aber sicher in Blue verliebt, doch der ist noch nicht bereit, sich mit Simon zu treffen. Dann fällt eine der E-Mails in falsche Hände – und plötzlich steht Simons Leben Kopf. (x)


Der Schreibstil war unheimlich schön, so lustig, leicht und locker. Die Emails zwischen drinnen, fand ich super, weil ich einfach alles mag, was ein bisschen anders als einfacher Text geschrieben ist.


Die Charaktere und ihre Beziehungen. Ich liebe LIEBE Simon als Hauptcharakter. Er ist einfach so richtig klasse und ich mag seine Art von Humor. Ich fand seine Gruppe von Freunden unheimlich klasse, Nick, Abby und Leah. Und mochte auch die Beziehung zwischen den Vieren, es war nicht immer einfach aber wirklich total schön. Und dann Simon's Familie. Sie sind oftmals total über das Ziel hinausgeschossen aber ich fand sie alle total liebenswert. Und Blue. BLUE. Ich werde seinen richtigen Namen in der Bewertung nicht schreiben, einfach um Spoiler zu vermeiden. Ich fand ihn so klasse, in den Emails (kein Wunder, dass sich Simon in ihn verliebt hat) und dann als wir ihn richtig kennenlernen konnten und ein Gesicht zu den Worten hatten. Ich bin so glücklich, dass er es war und find die beiden einfach nur super süß zusammen. Übrigens hätte ich absolut nichts gegen ein Buch, dass uns die Geschichte aus der Sicht von Blue erzählt, wollte ich unbedingt mal erwähnen.

Den einzigen, den ich absolut nicht mochte, war Martin. Seine Entschuldigungsemail war mir da zum Ende wirklich einfach egal, denn er war mir einfach so total unsympathisch und was er gemacht hat, das macht man einfach nicht. Nope.


Das Ende kam ein bisschen überraschend für mich, nicht von der Story her, sondern eher, dass ich gerade mal bei um die 80% war und auf einmal die Danksagung kam. Ich hätte noch so gerne ein bisschen mehr von Simon und Blue gelesen.


Aber alles im Allen, wirklich ein absolutes 5 Sterne Buch für mich. Bin super gespannt auf andere Bücher der Autorin.




That has been one of the books that you couldn't get past last year, no matter what type of booktuber or bookblogger you follow. It was everywhere. I found it on Netgalley but never really found the right time to start it. But now I did and I'm so happy about it.



Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met. (x)


The writing was just so great, so funny, easy and fluffy. The emails in between, loved it, I'm just a sucker for everything that is a bit different from normal text.


The characters and their relationships. I love LOVE Simon as a maincharacter. He is so amazing and I love his sense of humor. I thought his group of friends were amazing, Nick, Abby and Leah. I loved the relationship between these four, even though it wasn't always perfect, it was beautiful and real. And Simon's family. They were a bit over the top sometimes but they were so loveable. And Blue. BLUE. I won't mention his real name in the review, just to avoid spoilers. I loved him, in his emails (no wonder, Simon fell for him) and then when we actually got to meet him and put a face to his words. I'm so happy that it turned out to be him and the two of them were just so freaking cute together. I would love a book from Blue's point of view, just saying.

The only one I didn't like at all, was Martin. His apology email did nothing for me and at that point I didn't even care, he was just so unlikeable and what he did, you just don't do crap like that. Nope.


The ending came as a bit of a surprise, not because of the story but because I was only at like 80% and suddenly there was the author saying her thanks to all the people involved. I wasn't ready, I wanted some more Simon and Blue.


But overall, the book is a total 5 star book for me. I'm so excited to read more books by the author.

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review 2016-08-21 15:20
#CBR8 Book 91: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli

Simon Spier, middle child in a very close-knit family is sixteen years old and gay. Not that anyone but his pen pal Blue knows this, until class clown Martin looks over his shoulder at the library and discovers his secret. Simon suddenly finds himself blackmailed. Help Martin get a chance with his friend Abby, or Martin outs Simon to the whole school. This might also mean that Blue's identity is in some way compromised. Simon doesn't want to help Martin, but feels he doesn't have any other choice. 


Simon doesn't really do drama, except in the sense of being part of the school musical. The fact that there are tensions among his life-long friends after Abby was added to the mix, and he's slowly falling more for Blue, who he's falling for, even though he doesn't know which of the boys in school it is, means Simon's life is becoming a lot more eventful and constantly pushes him out of his comfort zone. Will Simon continue to let Martin blackmail him? Will his friends Nick and Leah adjust to the fact that Nick is in love with Abby? Will Simon ever discover the true identity of Blue, and do they have a chance as a couple if he does?


Once again, I'm not the first of the Cannonballers to review this, and I'd also seen it very favourably written-up over on Forever Young Adult. I liked this book a lot, but I didn't absolutely love it, which I've seen some people out there do. The blackmail aspect really did make me uncomfortable, especially after SPOILER! Martin actually goes through with the threat of outing Simon on the high school Tumblr blog after it becomes obvious that Simon is never going to be able to make Abby really notice him (super d*ck move, Martin). I felt so awful for Simon and because I have been lucky enough to grow up cis-gendered, white and heteronormative, if severely geeky and a most definitely on the social outskirts, I never needed to worry about hiding parts of who I am/was. Simon and Blue discuss coming out at some length in their e-mails and the fact that Simon didn't get to choose when and how he told his family, friends and the rest of the world made me so upset. 


When I read books like this, I hope that adolescents and teens today are aware of how incredibly lucky they are. I know that lack of representation and diversity is still a big problem in literature in general, but at least there is more of it out there than when I was a teen. There is such a vast variety of genres and so many topics being discussed, nothing like the fairly dour socially lecturing fare I grew up with, where everything written for teens seemed to be warning them off drugs, eating disorders, teenage pregnancy or HIV/AIDS. There wasn't really fantasy and sci-fi written specifically for teens. There certainly wasn't all these great books about contemporary teenagers and the issues they go through, which may seem trivial to many adults (like romance, most favoured genre of my heart, the YA category (it's NOT just one genre) is so often derised by literary snobs. 


This was not one of the books in the Cannonball YA poll for the upcoming book club (because too many people had recently reviewed it, I think). It's still highly recommended to anyone who's looking for more contemporary YA to check out, where there isn't a chosen one fighting a dystopian regime or trying to single-handedly conquer a fantasy kingdom or something, but just trying to get by in their hormone-fuelled daily existence and trying to survive until adulthood. As far as I'm aware, this is Becky Albertalli's first novel, but I've already added her next book (out in April 2017) to my TBR list, because she is clearly one to watch.


Judging a book by its cover: I don't entirely know what I think about this cover. I can see why you'd want the headless body, so the reader can more easily insert their image of the character, but it also looks a bit creepy. Red is a nice, bright and noticeable background colour, though, and it would stand out if placed face forward on a shelf.

Source: kingmagu.blogspot.no/2016/08/cbr8-book-91-simon-vs-homo-sapiens.html
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review 2016-08-20 22:43
Fabulous, adorable, touching, captivating and delightful
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli

Fabulous, adorable, touching, captivating and delightful are just some of the superlatives I want to use to describe Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda.


*Deep breath*


So yes, I loved this book. The story is sweet, cute and poignant. I loved the normality of it all. Simon is a teenager coming to terms with growing up and finding his way in the world. Being gay and at some point having to come out is only one of many ‘issues’ he’s dealing with. I mean there’s also his ‘overly enthusiastic and interested in their kids’ parents, how to deal with alcohol and, of course, the whole mystery of Blue not to mentioned being blackmailed.


I loved that reading the book made me feel exactly as living with a teenager used to do. It is an emotional roller coaster on which love can turn into hate and happiness into despair in moments. Everything is huge until it’s turned into nothing at all and the whole experience of just living is as exhilarating as it is confusing.


“But I’m tired of coming out. All I ever do is come out. I try not to change, but I keep changing, in all these tiny ways. I get a girlfriend. I have a beer. And every freaking time, I have to reintroduce myself to the universe again.”


Of course, what Simon doesn’t realise but the reader is all too aware of, is that Simon is also constantly introducing himself to himself. He’s discovering sides to himself he never knew he had, he does things he couldn’t have imagined himself doing, and experiencing feelings he doesn’t quite know how to deal with.


“Do you ever feel locked into yourself? I’m not sure if I’m making sense here. I guess what I mean is that sometimes it seems like everyone knows who I am except me.


Spending time with Simon, his family, and his friends was a delight. Sure there were moments when my heart ached for him, but overall reading this book was a joy filled experience. It was wonderful to read a book about teenagers without violence or outright bullying. It made a nice chance to read a book in which the parents were accepting and loving, if maybe a bit awkward at times.


Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens agenda made me smile, had me laughing out loud, brought (both happy and sad) tears to my eyes and left me feeling good about life. And occasionally it presented me with little gems of writing.


“Being secure in your masculinity isn’t the same as being straight.”


This book made me so freaking grateful I did the whole teenage thing ages ago and managed to survive it more or less unscathed—even if it didn’t feel like that at the time. But then, I guess that’s exactly what this book is about and the reason it’s such a fabulous read. Which one of us over the age of fourteen doesn’t recognise these thoughts, doubts, fears and feelings? Gay, straight or otherwise inclined, we’ve all battled these demons.


In case you somehow missed the point I’m trying to make, here it is: I HIGHLY recommend this book to any reader over the age of 14. 



“People really are like houses with vast rooms and tiny windows.”

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text 2016-07-10 23:52
Ramblings Regarding June Reading
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda - Becky Albertalli
Blue Lily, Lily Blue: Book 3 of the Raven Cycle - Maggie Stiefvater,Will Patton,Scholastic Audio
City of Glass - Cassandra Clare

Favorite book of the monthSimon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli and Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater (I am declaring co-winners, here. I'm okay with this.)

Longest in pagesCity of Glass by Cassandra Clare at 561 pages


Total books ingested: 30

Re-reads: 6


Audiobooks ingested: 1

Minutes spent listening: 603

Average minutes per day: 20


Total books read: 29

Total pages read: 6243

Average pages per book: 215

Average pages per day: 208



1: 2

2: 4

3: 17

4: 7

5: 0

Did not finish: 0 (This number probably ought to have been higher, but I was feeling stubborn.)


Average: 2.96


This was a moderately strange month in a few ways. The number of short stories I read (and many of them were very short) did some curious things to the numbers and obviously made my page count much lower than it would have been. They were fun, though, so no regrets. Sometimes you just need something five pages long.


I completely fell off the boat of my monthly reading challenge (June was supposed to be "Adaptations," for reference. Which is a shame, since I have quite a few I am interested in reading. Not that that's going to stop me, clearly.), and I'm still behind on my yearly book number challenge, too.


did finally finish an audiobook again (go me!) and have made hefty inroads on a few more. 


Plans for July: actually write reviews, listen to more audiobooks, finish up The Raven Cycle (I'm just holding off because I'm not ready for it to be over), finally finish annotating A Feast for Crows so I can hand it off to my most-patient friend, who may have been waiting for it for at least a year now.


How was everyone else's June? Reading go well? How does it feel to be halfway through the year? Anyone else having trouble keeping up with their challenges?

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